Im certainly no Pro….but today I was winning at life

It’s been two weeks since I have given birth to our newest addition Rocco Lawrence.  He has slotted right into the Riley house with us like a glove. I feel like I’ve blinked and these two weeks have just flown passed me.  Pregnancy, giving birth and raising your babies is the most magical and rewarding experience I would say this is why I went on to have four precious babies. Without complaint it’s also the most challenging filled with worry and doubt as a parent.  I think for many of us no matter how long or short the break between having babies wether it be a first or fourth the post natal period can be really tough and easily forgotten. The after effects of birth along with the forever changing normal stance can be a over whelming experience. 

Labour has never been a smooth experience for me and none of my pregnancies were straight forward.  Two prem babies, induction, SPROM, retained placenta, haemorrhage, two transfusion my list goes on. For all my experiences have tested me physically and emotionally it’s not been enough to put me off wanting more children. 

A believer that your body recovers but not without its imperfections from childbirth and pregnancy. You have to be prepared to not look or feel the same as you were pre pregnancies it comes with the job. Embrace it.  I can honestly say my preference given the choice would be to give birth once each month for the nine you carry and skip the pregnancy if only we had a choice. I have bad experiences with SPD in each pregnancy which has got worse with each the pain was unbearable at times. 

The weeks after birth are the bits no one talks about! The bits I think realistically you can’t prepare for physically or emotionally. I am incredibly lucky I have such a wonderfully supportive hubby and family and friends that have helped me over these past two weeks while I’ve recovered from birth, and tried to find my feet with Rocco. Having my other three boys is tough at times the constant mum guilt rears it’s head and all I want to do it get into a routine as a family of 6. I think thats been the most frustrating part this time around I still think I can do it all but realistically I need time to recover.

So let me start with the labour.  With four very different birthing experiences I never quite got the water birth I’ve longed for but due to my history it wasn’t meant to be. Due to SPD I was induced which I was dreading after a horrible experience of induction with Jenson my second due to my waters breaking at 34 weeks. They say no two pregnancy’s and birth are the same quite rightly so this time around was much better. A 12 hour process with waters breaking and Rocco coming around 3 hours later. I got my New Year’s Day baby! 

The delivery Ouch. Well I could probably say more but I’m keeping it clean. It’s a painful process and the worst part for me was the head. A strong burning sensation which is pretty much unforgettable! The delivery of my 9lb boy was helped with an episiotomy. It’s not the most pleasant of things to go through but needs are a must. It’s the stitching part that’s the worst, but my boy was a welcome distraction. At this point I lost a lot of blood and needed a transfusion exhaustion set in and I felt like there were so many things happening at once. The only words I can use to describe it is we are like bloody wonder women! Dealing with so many things all at once. 

The first 24 hours after delivery on a ward where you most probably get no rest and little sleep was exhausting for me. Whilst trying to establish breast feeding and sleep and eat and care for my boy it was bloody hard work. I still felt terribly poorly after my transfusion my stitches were killing me and I just wanted to be at home. After two days I was discharged reluctantly to rest at home.

Ahh the first 5 days in our crazy home life as a family of 6…it’s had its highs and lows! I was so pleased to be home from hospital to get some real rest. Real rest…what the heck is that? It’s where the hard work starts haha. I’m not a person who can relax most of time. Anyone that knows me knows I’m active, I’m a mother, wife and run my own business, the only resting time I get is my sleep on a night and most of the time it’s broken by the littlest (not the littlest now) Maxwell. From piles to the first poo those are memories which don’t leave and for me I’ve remembered it all from previous births so know what to expect! My constant paranoia about germs has been pretty horrific. Anyone reading this who has visited me knows what I’m writing about here…the hand washing and antibacterial gel ordeal I’ve put them through.  Anxiety has a lot to answer for.  One thing I’ve never experienced is night sweats and since giving birth I’ve had it almost every night. I’m cold then I’m hot, hormones and ridding my body of excess fluid-very uncomfortable.

My goodness day 4-5 when the milk sets in my breast feeding woes began and I cried. With sores and blisters, engorging I spent most of the days walking around with cabbage on my boobs topless. My husband called me ‘cabbage tits’ and said it’s the most he’s seen them in the past 9 month. It kept me smiling among the tears.  I carried on with breast feeding but this time around I could have gave up on day 5 easily, however I know there is a light at the end of the tunnel having fed Maxwell. I love breast feeding I’m no pro and found this time around very different with Rocco. Having bottle fed but expressed with Tyler and Jenson as they would never latch on being born preterm I struggled. I love being able cuddle my babies close. It was something I was most looking forward to this time around I just forgot the hard work that comes first to establish it! The stitches were still really painful which made feeding more difficult as sitting down well let’s say it was not pretty.  Bathing twice a day to get some form of relief my mum in law then bought me the best thing I can honestly say it helped so much spritz for bits oh my word how it soothes. I’d highly recommend for anyone who has stitches.

You can’t sleep when the baby sleeps.  I’ve found this impossible between health care visits and caring for Rocco and boys it’s been a challenge.   As the days and nights have gone on tiredness has set in as three hourly feeds and cluster feeding is now well and truly kicked in. Most mornings I’ve been up since 4.30. The feeding winding nappy process taking over an hour then it’s been time to get ready for the school run.  My lovely family have helped me with that one…today I braved the morning run myself after two weeks of not doing it I did it! It’s the small wins. 

And so my baby boy is now two weeks…I have felt that I’ve been in a blur bubble. We are remarkable humans us mamas to grow and nurture our tiny humans until birth and beyond. For this ill be forever thankful.